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says, ' was overflowed at once, and nothing remained rising . above the surface of the sea, except the mountains to the south-west, or the hills to the north-east.' The whole of this fearful tale is swept away by Mr. Woodley with a few facts. First, the Scilly islands could never have borne the aspect of mountains to any plains, for the highest land in Scilly is not 170 feet above the level of the sea. Secoudly, the whole course of the soundings from Scilly to the Seven Stones, and thence half-way to the range of rocks denominated the Longships, is from 50 to 52 fathoms, diminishing, on the approach to Cornwall, to 47 and 45 fathoms : consequently, the supposed inundated tract must now be 300 feet below the sea ; while in those places at Scilly, where the water has evidently gained on the Islands, there are not above three or four fathoms at high tides. Thirdly, the Seven Stones (the supposed hills to the * North-east) do not lie in a direct line between Scilly and the Land's End, but full two leagues nearly N. W. of that line.
• Had the promontory of the Lioness, therefore, ever existed, it must have described a curve almost resembling a semi-circle, from Scilly to the Land's End. The greatest force of the Atlantic Ocean is exerted during the prevalence of storms from the southwestward, the sea then rushing in with a tremendous under current from the Bay of Biscay. To this force the Scilly Islands have been constantly exposed, and yet, during the lapse of thousands of years, they have received, at most, but partial injury; whereas the promontory, or (according to Whitaker) the extended island, which is stated to have been overflowed at once, could not, from its position, have been acted on in a powerful manner by that or any other sea.'
As to the Cornish word Lethowsow or Lioness, by which the sea between Scilly and Cornwall is distinguished, it is accounted for by its general violence and turbulence, althongh it may have been connected with some forgotten tradition. Finally, as to the difficulty of reconciling the present dimensions of the county of Cornwall with the computation made in the reign of Edward I., which assigns it 1,500,000 acres, although it does not now contain above half that number, Mr. Woodley satisfactorily replies.
• The Survey of the date of Edward the First, may be clearly shown to have been formed on a mode of division of the counties of Cornwall and Devon which does not now prevail. Cornwall, at present, properly contains no more than 759,681 acres. In order to make it of the dimensions before noted, the supposed tract of land called Lioness, the length of which (from Scilly to the Land's End) could only have been thirty miles, must yet have contained 740,319 acres ;-almost as much as the whole country of Cornwall !! The absurdity of this is sufficiently manifest ; and the 1,500,000 acres
claimed for Cornwall in the alledged Survey, could only have been summed up by taking an incorrect and exaggerated measurement or estimate of Cornwall proper, and including Dartmoor forest (80,000 acres) and other Duchy lands, from the county of Devon; or else, as Mr. Whitaker says, by a casual “ dash of the pen.'
• That the present Íslands, or at least many of them, were formerly united, there seem good reasons for believing. There are large tracts of sand, called flats, extending from St. Martin's to St. Mary's on the south, and to Iresco on the West. Tresco is joined to Bryher, and Bryher to Samson, by similar links.' These flats are so dry at low water (spring tides) that from Samson to Bryher and Tresco a man may then pass dry shod ;-nearly so from Tresco to St. Martin's ; nor would the water reach higher than his knees were he to cross from the latter Island to St. Mary's.St, Agnes appears to have been always separate from the rest.
• It is further deserving of remark, that these sands lie on the inner part of the Islands, towards the Roadstead, in which the depth . of water is not more than from two to five fathoms; whilst the outer part of the Islands, which is more immediately exposed to the sea, is guarded with lofty crags and ranges of advanced rocks, having about fifteen fathoms of water near the shore, and from twenty to thirty-five fathoms at not a mile's distance from it. The Islands, then, never extended further into the sea ; and what has been ravaged from them, has only tended to increase the distance between them, but not to diminish the circuit of the whole.' pp. 62-66.
How curious a work might be compiled, consisting of exploded hypotheses ! -The climate of Scilly, our Author states, is very mild; but the winds are generally fresh, and often violent.
By those who have kept journals it has been found, that not more than six days of perfect calon occur iu the course of a year. During one half of the year the wind blows fron Westerly points, that is to say, between South West and North-West ; and these winds are generally strong. Storms often arise almost suddenly, and last long; and the inhabitants, having no protection of trees, nor aught that might intercept their violence, feel their effects very sensibly. Yet in summer, the appearance of the sea and sky is delightful; and the view of the sun, slowly sinking in the Western wave at the utmost verge of the horizon, is calculated to excite feelings of the purest pleasure and the most sublime devotion.' p. 85.
Prefixed to the volume, is a neat chart of the Islands.
Art. IX. 1. The Life of the Right Hon. Willielma, Viscountess
Glenorchy, containing Extracts from her Diary and Correspondence. By T. S. Jones, D. D. Minister of her Chapel, Edinburgh.
8vo. pp. 520. Price 10s. 6d. Edinburgh. 1822. 2. The Holy Life of Mrs. Elizabeth Walker : giving a modest and
short Account of her exemplary Piety and Charity. By Anthony Walker, D. D. Rector of Fyfield, Essex. First published in 1690. A new Edition, abridged and revised by the Rev. J. W. Brooks, Domestic Chaplain to Lord Viscount Galway. 12mo.
pp. 150. Price 3s. 6d. London. 1823. 3. Memoirs of Eminently Pious Women of the British Empire. A
new Edition, revised and enlarged, by the Rev. Samuel Burder,
M.A. 3 vols. 12mo. (Portraits.) Price 11. 78. London. 1823. 4. A Mother's Portrait : sketched soon after her Decease, for the
Study of her Children, by their surviving Parent. 12mo. pp. 154.
“ defiled,” which is suggested by the words of St. James,a female occupied in visits of beneficence, and fleeing from contact with a polluting world. This feminine exhibition of Christianity realised in the living character, is one of the most attractive spectacles in the world. Even worldly and dissipated men will often be found to recognise the seemliness of religion in women. In them, a severe piety is more readily tolerated, and by their “ chaste conversation" many a husband has, “ without the word,” been won over to religion. But the delineation of such a character is a delicate task, and requires a skilful limner. The coarse-featured daubings which have been sometimes held up to admiration as portraits of exemplary excellence, would give no idea of “ pure and undefiled
Religion” to those who were not acquainted with the original. There is, perhaps, no class of works more instructive, or which has been more extensively useful, than religious biography ; but no works have been, for the most part, written in such bad taste or with so little ability. The immense quantity of religious trash which has been put forth in the shape of obituaries and memorials, has tended to bring the whole description of publications into contempt. This remark applies especially, perhaps, to female obituaries. It
It may be very interesting to private friends, to know what sermon first impressed the mind of their deceased relative, what hymns she was fond of repeating, and what were her dying words and confessionparticulars which occupy the chief part of very many such narratives. But in such examples, there is nothing exemplary :
Vol. XX. N. S.
we might add, in such characters, there is nothing characteristic. The Christian life consists of something more than a conversion and a death bed; but the fixing of the attention on these two points in the mental history of the individual, has, we are persuaded, sometimes had the effect of throwing Christian practice into the shade. Obituaries indeed, it may be said, are not to be considered as biographical memoirs. We have a word coined expressly for this sort of prose epitaphnecrology. But religious obituaries are continually run out into memoirs, and an amazing number are eked out into little volumes, the inanity and piety of which render them nearly harmless, if they fall into the right hands; for the texts of Scripture and scraps of hymns are at all events instructive. Still, what we regret is, that a style of piety should be held up in these works, to admiration and emulation, as exemplary, which has nothing in it distinguishing, and very little that is practical; that the standard of Christian character should be İowered to the most common-place specimens of well-meaning worth, and the mind be taught to shape its aspirings by the contemplation of dwarfish or vulgar models. In such works, we seldom meet with any thing either to elevate the mind, to inform the intellect, or even to excite to any high aim in the course of active piety. Their influence is at least negatively injurious; and it is well if they are not the means of corrupting the simplicity of the mind, by fostering a mawkish sympathy, rather than a noble emulation.
of the works now before us, the first is entitled to very respectful mention ; for Lady Glenorchy was no ordinary character, and her life would furnish matter for a highly interesting memoir. If Dr. Jones has not acquitted himself of his delicate task quite to our satisfaction, it is not that he has failed to place her Ladyship's character in an instructive light, or that the volume may not be read with profit and advantage, but chiefly that it is much too large. The size of the work would have been an objection, had it appeared immediately after Lady Glenorchy's death ; but her ladyship has now been dead nearly forty years, and after this long and most unaccountable delay in bringing forward her memoirs, it is really extremely injudicious to publish them in this state. Her Biographer terms them ' annals;' and he expresses his confident hope, that, by * all who know the Gospel in its spiritual character, these . annals will be read with heart-felt interest;' • not because they contain any thing strange or novel, or unfold any -xperience which is not more or less common to other Christians, but because they bring them to a more distinct and particular acquaintance with one whose memory is highly and justly honoured in the religious world.'
Alas ! how many individuals does Dr. Jones calculate upon as his readers, who can have any personal reason for honouring the memory of his right honourable benefactress, unless it be on hereditary grounds? Another religious world' has sprung up since she entered upon her rest and her reward, strangers to Lady Glenorchy, the larger part, even by name. A few individuals besides himself survive, to connect together the generation gone by with the present. The Rev. Rowland Hill, whom we read of in the first chapter, A. D. 1764, then a young man of a decidedly pious character,' is now, at sixty years distance, the venerable patriarch of Methodism. But scarcely a name occurs throughout the volume, of any other surviving contemporary. The form of annals, moreover, is the worst that could have been chosen for a biographical memoir; and the interest which might have been given to it as history, is precluded by the perpetual suspension of the narrative for the purpose of inserting different series of letters, and copious extracts from her ladyship’s diary. These are multiplied and extended beyond all reasonable bounds; and though, upon the whole, there is much that is instructive in the workings of mind which they lay open, and in the ingenuousness of character which they display, yet, Lady Glenorchy's natural powers were not of that high stamp that would give value to all her private meditations. On many passages we might be tempted to comment, were we not dissuaded by the consideration that the volume and our pages will have few readers in common,
It is but justice to say that the volume, though faulty in the respect pointed out, is free from any other objection, and
may be recommended as containing much that is interesting to religious readers.
With the second work in our list we have been highly pleased. It is, as the titlepage announces, a reprint, with judicious abridgement and revision, of a memoir first printed towards the close of the seventeenth century. It may consequently be expected to reflect, in the quaintness of its composition, and the nature of some of its details, the taste and manners of the age.
In an Appendix is given, among other papers, a Letter written by Mrs. Walker to her grandchild, which amply justifies, by its good sense, naiveté, and enlightened piety, the fond estimate of her affectionate Biographer.
Dr. Gibbons's " Memoirs of Eminently Pious Women,” the groundwork of the publication we have next to notice, was first published in 1777, in two volumes, 8vo. It was a good